Monday, 4 April 2011

Ideas 31-40

31. Council garage/lock-up sites to be released for social housing sites

Far too many council garage sites are used for lock-ups and should be removed (replaced by central facilities either run by local businesses or by a specially established social enterprise). This would release these sites, adjacent to and in many cases in the centre of already established housing areas, for a mix of social housing, including affordable, social rented, shared equity, etc.

Every council should be undertaking an asset management assessment of these sites, where they exist, or indeed other parcels of land that would help to solve Scotland’s terrible housing shortage.

32. Establish a Healthy Towns Initiative through a Town Centre Regeneration Fund II

33. All civic representative bodies to share an office base near Holyrood at affordable renting rates.

34. Fund GARL with M8 and/or M74 motorway tolls

35. National Newspapers to have PSO to cover national, regional and local government

36. Introduce a sequential test for office developments along the lines of that in place for large retail applications.

This would secure existing usage and drive new footfall into our town centres

37. Initiate a loft and garage (and perhaps basement) conversion scheme to increase building density.

38. Establish a Senate of the Leaders for Stirling.

39. Develop stronger links at each level between the Court Service and the rest of the public service family.

40. Divert a percentage of the TV license fee to the arts community.


  1. Why build GARL before Glasgow Crossrail is complete? Lack of joined up thinking on this one. The New GARL project has also shown how to build the link cheaper with BAA taking responsibility for shouldering the cost - after all this is private transport?

  2. Alongside introduction of a sequential test for offices, it would be worth reviewing the same test for retail - or we'll see more crazy developments like the ASDA store which is being built just south of IKEA in Midlothian. It's about as far removed from a centre as you could ever locate a store!
    Maybe we could see some town and city centre office development with large retail units underneath - maybe even some housing too. We could call it urbanism.....

  3. You make a valid point Grant but this idea does not represent a lack of joined up thinking.

    Rather, we support a fixed rail link, light or heavy, from the city centre to the airport and GARL is the current front runner.

  4. Can't disagree with that suggestion Richard. It may be wishful thinking but perhaps the continuing escalation of petrol prices will make people think twice before driving 20 miles to shop at Braehead etc.

    Of course, if they do and decide to shop locally the majority of town centres are in on fit state to compete for custom. They need significant investment.

    P.s. do you fnacy contributing to the 100 ideas feature with one of your own?

  5. Yes. Why don't our schools reduce foreign trips and make more use of Scotland's rich cultural, natural, geographical, scientific and historical resources for education? Less financial burden on parents, more custom for Scottish businesses and establishments, more young people with a first hand knowledge of their own country, smaller carbon footprint - these are significant benefits. The additional expenditure that might circulate through Scotland's economy would surely be enormous. Most young people have other opportunities to travel abroad that didn't exist when these foreign trips started.

  6. Are you happy for me to use this text directly in the feature?